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Niecy Nash-Betts to Receive the Stephen F. Kolzak Award at the 35th Annual GLAAD Media Awards

GLAAD, the world’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) media advocacy organization, announced that Emmy Award®-winning actress and producer Niecy Nash-Betts will receive the Stephen F. Kolzak Award, which goes to members of the LGBTQ community, at the 35th Annual GLAAD Media Awards in Los Angeles.

Niecy Nash-Betts is a multi-talented Emmy Award®-winning actress and producer who continues to captivate audiences with her shining talent and infectious energy both in front of and behind the camera.

Nash-Betts recently won an Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited or Anthology Series or Movie for her portrayal of “Glenda Cleveland” in Ryan Murphy’s Netflix limited series, DAHMER-MONSTER: THE JEFFREY DAHMER STORY, based on the life of serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer. Her role has also garnered her Critics Choice and NAACP Image Awards, as well as Golden Globe and SAG Award nominations.

Released January 19, Nash-Betts currently stars in Ava DuVernay’s feature film, ORIGIN, an adaptation of Isabel Wilkerson’s book, Caste: The Origins of Our Discontent. The film features Nash-Betts as “Marion” alongside Aunjanue Ellis, Jon Bernthal and Vera Farmiga.

In 2021, Nash-Betts hosted the GLAAD Media Awards and in 2023,Nash-Betts was honored with the Visibility Award by Family Equality for her work with the organization to support and protect LGBTQ families.

From 2022 to 2023, she led the ABC series, THE ROOKIE: FEDS, where she played an out LGBTQ character, Special Agent Simone Clark, the oldest rookie in theFBI Academy assigned to support the Los Angeles field office. The show was nominated for a GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding New TV Series.

In 2022, Nash-Betts and her wife, singer/songwriter Jessica Betts, made history as the first same-sex couple to appear on the cover of Essence magazine. The cover story received a nomination for a 2023 GLAAD Media Award in the category of “Outstanding Print Article.”

Nash-Betts’ diverse career includes roles inHBO’s GETTING ON, which earned her two Emmy nominations, and Netflix’s limited Ava DuVernay series, WHEN THEY SEE US based on the exonerated Central ParkFive. She played a mother of a young trans woman, which earned Nash-Betts a third Emmy nomination and an NAACP Image Award.  She has also held leading roles in FOX’s SCREAM QUEENS, Showtime’s MASTERS OF SEX and TV Land’s THE SOUL MAN. In February 2022, Nash-Betts finished headlining TNT’s drama, CLAWS.

Nash-Betts is well-known for her role as “Officer Raineesha Williams” on the Comedy Central hit, RENO 911!, a half-hour unscripted spoof of COPS that aired for six seasons. She is developing various television and film projects through her production company, Chocolate Chick, Inc.

Nash-Betts resides in LA with her wife, where she is devoted to church and participating at charitable functions in support of causes that are close to her heart, including the prevention and awareness of HIV, breast cancer, school violence and domestic abuse, among others.

​​”Opening doors both as a Black and queer woman, Niecy Nash-Bett’s outstanding legacy as a performer gives new meaning to the term trailblazer, said GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis. “Her decades-long career is owed to her empathy, talent, and authenticity, which undoubtedly inform each move she makes as an activist and every role she portrays onscreen. Nash has redefined and expanded the role of Black queer women in entertainment and, along with her wife Jessica, has become a possibility model to queer women everywhere.”


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